We recently moved from Directv to Dish to save money on monthly fees. While there is less programming available on Dish, that has not been an issue for us.
The problem is that I have a customized Windows Media Center setup to record programs and specifically added a receiver so that we could record while watching other programs on our TV's. Shortly after moving to Dish I noticed that our recordings we all a logo screen stating we needed to push "select" to activate the receiver. Investigation revealed that the receivers are configured by default to power off after 4 hours and I was able to disble this. However, the next day, the receiver was off again. I could only attribute this to the daily update that Dish forces on each receiver...there is no way to disable this update/reboot; you can only change the time that it occurs. So I contacted support to try and find a work around.
The reply from support was that the only way to wake up the receiver is to schedule channel changes. While I am still not pleased, I could work around this for once a day to keep the receiver active. The real issue and the reason for this publicized complaint (to warn others) is that the tech also informed me "We are in the process of removing the ability to disable the Inactivity Power Off feature on all of our receivers." In other words, as soon as they get around to it, my receiver is going to power off every few hours and there will be no way for me to disable this.
Clearly Dish is not doing this as some big-brother power saving measure. The only reason I can fathom is that they are trying to prevent people from using their own recording devices to force them into purchasing and paying monthly fees for the Dish DVR service. Had I known this in advance, I would have stayed with Directv.
I have forwarded my complaint to their executivecustomerservice AT dishnetwork.com email address but I don't expect that to do any good. Teh best I can hope for is to prevent others who use personal recording devices from falling into their trap.